Apr 2019
Electricity Distribution
Intelligent Network meshing switch
ENWL 023
Apr 2019
Apr 2020
Electricity North West Limited
Delroy Ainsworth
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Network Innovation Allowance
ED - Network improvements and system operability, ED - New technologies and commercial evolution, ED - Safety and health and environment
LV & 11kV Networks
Existing DNO networks are not designed to cope with the highly variable power flows that will be caused by the introduction of LCTs, such as vehicle charging and generation. Interconnection of LV networks is one of the means by which voltage, thermal and harmonic problems created by LCT loads and generation connected to LV networks can be significantly reduced. Retro-fit devices installed in link boxes can used to remotely mesh the network when required however a number of technical issues have been identified that require additional research to resolve. The following issues are currently restricting a BAU deployment in all areas of the network:-

·         Condensation

·         Communications in certain areas
Water ingress
A staged approach is proposed to produce a final device that is suitable for installation network wide. The three stages can be summarised as follows:


Stage 1

Improve the existing devices to make the device smaller with an improved water ingress IP rating. Investigate and select communication protocols that will provide maximum connection time to the installed device. Multiple protocols may be required to cover all location types.

Stage 2

Simulate heat and humidity in a link box with the device fitted. Investigate solutions and trial in a test environment. Develop a power supply and electronic design that will reduce overall heating and trial in a test environment.

Stage 3

Complete type testing and install a number of devices for live field testing. Evaluate live trial results.
Enables radial LV networks to be meshed when required giving the following benefits

·         Safety – reduced manual operation

·         Reinforcement reduction

·         System losses reduction

·         Quicker connection of LCT’s